Minimum Viable Processes = The Right Balance of Formal and Informal

Posted on Posted in Startup
[~ 2 min read]

 

Here at hap2U, we believe in balance – the right mix of two extremes – like working hard and having fun while we do it, respecting diversity and playfully making fun of each other, long working days with a relaxing lunch break.  And similarly, we have adopted an approach to business processes that increase productivity, but don’t bog us down with administrative tasks.  I like to call this “Minimum Viable Processes” – just enough process to streamline our activities, while keeping us flexible to adapt to our partners’ needs.

When I first started at hap2U, we had recently expanded from 6 employees to 12, had signed our first business contracts, and were getting ready to deliver our first batch of the Xplore Touch development kit.  Our inboxes and memories were feeling the growing pains, and we decided to implement CRM, Project Management, and back office tools throughout the company.

 

What?

We had a long list of requests for the new tool – more than just a platform to manage our customer interactions, we wanted a complete system that would grow and mature with us.  Luckily, the internet is full of solutions (just Google “CRM” and see for yourself!).  After a few weeks of market research, we agreed on an online out-of-the-box business process suite.  It had good reviews, helpful customer service, sophisticated analytics, killer apps… on top of an impressive, modulable feature list.  It was a fit!

 

How?

We started implementation in September 2017, module by module, starting with the CRM.  Each phase was preceded by a discussion on high level processes and business rules that would structure the tool.  This step was important – relevant team members provided their feedback on potential use cases, and we agreed together on the amount of detail that would be required.  This is where the “Minimum Viable Process” part comes in.  We agreed on what the minimum would be, with the option to be more complete when necessary. Thanks to our system’s modularity, we can pick and choose the feature set that makes the most sense to us.  And it’s adaptable – we are adjusting as we go (and grow!).

 

Why?

After a little more than six months of use, we confirm that processes aren’t just for well-established companies.  Start-ups can see the benefits quickly and easily with the right approach.  At hap2U, we now have well-followed Sales, Marketing, and Project Management processes. These modules are well used by the entire team.  Our communication is more efficient – we know where to find the most important information.  And best of all, with these foundations in place (and the data that comes with it), the next step will be to build helpful reports and dashboards with data-driven KPI’s to constantly improve and learn from our interactions.

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